All 4 books by Edward Tufte now in
paperback editions, $100 for all 4
Visual Display of Quantitative Information
Envisioning Information
Visual Explanations
Beautiful Evidence
Paper/printing = original clothbound books.
Only available through ET's Graphics Press:
catalog + shopping cart
All 4 clothbound books, autographed by the author $180
catalog + shopping cart
Edward Tufte e-books
Immediate download to any computer:
Visual and Statistical Thinking $5
The Cognitive Style of Powerpoint $5
Seeing Around + Feynman Diagrams $5
Data Analysis for Politics and Policy $9
catalog + shopping cart
Edward Tufte one-day course,
Presenting Data and Information
Austin TX, January 27, 28
Houston TX, January 30, 31
Arlington VA, February 24, 25, 26
Click here for more information about ET's course and to register.
How to discover asteroid impacts

An intriguing use of Google Earth here.

Link via Robot Wisdom, which is also interesting, visual, and unusual.

-- Edward Tufte

Congratulations to the discoverer, but I'm a little disappointed that the article wasn't about what I was expecting it to be about, which was a tool for visually emphasizing the circular features of Google Earth images. Instead, the author just saw them in unmassaged Google Earth colours!

It reminds me that a couple of months ago a friend directed me to Google Earth and I got fascinated by the swirly coloured features of the Sahara desert's interior. I thought at first it must be some false colour emphasis to bring out subtle features of the desert, but apparently not, those are just normal colour changes.

I grew up with maps that showed deserts as uniform yellow solitudes with no interesting structure, in contrast with the inhabited regions and their many and varied shades. I hadn't appreciated that that was nothing more than an expression on the map of where the mapmakers' focus of attention was: nobody was making maps for Bedouins, or if they were, I wasn't seeing them.

I emailed my friend back with my discovery, and a few lines of Lewis Carroll:

He had bought a large map representing the sea,
Without the least vestige of land:
And the crew were much pleased when they found it to be
A map they could all understand.

"What's the good of Mercator's North Poles and Equators,
Tropics, Zones, and Meridian Lines?"
So the Bellman would cry: and the crew would reply
"They are merely conventional signs!

"Other maps are such shapes, with their islands and capes!
But we've got our brave Captain to thank:
(So the crew would protest) "that he's bought us the best –
A perfect and absolute blank!"

-- Derek Cotter (email)

Threads relevant to maps:

Privacy Policy